"Just finished reading Kurt Vonnegut's "A Man Without a Country" last night. I started days ago and it's a very short book, a very easy read. I guess I'm a slow reader. Actually, I'm a fitful rather than a slow reader. But the book has been on my mind all this time. I've read extracts to friends. I've recommended it. It has to be one of the sharpest indictments of our culture you can read anywhere. An elegy for the human species and the planet earth in what he sees to be their final throes.
"But it's also kind. Avuncular. Full of quiet wisdom. Honest. Plain-spoken. Clear-sighted. It's the kind of talk you'd want to hear from your grandfather, out of the depth of his experience of the world. Funny. Witty. Angry. Full of grief and sadness that things have reached this pitch. Unadorned, unsparing of himself as well as others. And full of love for the world and, particularly, its people. He just loves people. All kinds, particularly those as plain and honest as himself. He reserves his wrath for those who are dishonest, stupid, short-sighted, self-serving, self-righteous, exploitative..."
I wonder what he'd have to say about the current affaire Imus? I'd like to think he'd be as bemused as I by our common aversion to the insults we gladly pay to have flung in our direction.Anyway, thanks to Vonnegut, for everything he had to teach us. Bon voyage to him, wherever he may be headed. Or not. And apologies for the bad taste of quoting myself. As for the confession, well... later. Or tomorrow.